Fiona Jordan

Fiona Jordan
Ulster University · School of Psychology

About

60
Publications
13,209
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1,093
Citations
Citations since 2016
38 Research Items
743 Citations
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2016201720182019202020212022020406080100120140
2016201720182019202020212022020406080100120140
2016201720182019202020212022020406080100120140

Publications

Publications (60)
Preprint
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In their recent paper on “Challenges in mathematical cognition”, Alcock and colleagues (Alcock et al. [2016]. Challenges in mathematical cognition: A collaboratively-derived research agenda. Journal of Numerical Cognition, 2, 20-41) defined a research agenda through 26 specific research questions. An important dimension of mathematical cognition al...
Article
Full-text available
This paper explores the epistemics of social relations among Datooga-speaking children of rural Tanzania. It describes two linguistic resources for epistemic management in the Datooga language, namely, questions and an epistemic particle néadá. The paper then investigates children's use of these two resources in a 3.5 h sample of children's spontan...
Article
Full-text available
In this paper, past plant knowledge serves as a case study to highlight the promise and challenges of interdisciplinary data collection and interpretation in cultural evolution. Plants are central to human life and yet, apart from the role of major crops, people–plant relations have been marginal to the study of culture. Archaeological, linguistic,...
Article
Full-text available
Across the world people in different societies structure their family relationships in many different ways. These relationships become encoded in their languages as kinship terminology, a word set that maps variably onto a vast genealogical grid of kinship categories, each of which could in principle vary independently. But the observed diversity o...
Article
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Human kinship systems play a central role in social organization, as anthropologists have long demonstrated. Much less is known about how cultural schemas of relatedness are transmitted across generations. How do children learn kinship concepts? To what extent is learning affected by known cross-cultural variation in how humans classify kin? This r...
Article
Full-text available
Kinship is a fundamental and universal aspect of the structure of human society. The kinship category of ‘grandparents’ is socially salient, owing to grandparents’ investment in the care of the grandchildren as well as to older generations’ control of wealth and cultural knowledge, but the evolutionary dynamics of grandparent terms has yet to be st...
Preprint
Context-based cultural transmission biases such as prestige are thought to have been a primary driver in shaping the dynamics of human cultural evolution. However, few empirical studies have measured the importance of prestige relative to other effects, such as the content biases present within transmitted information. Here, we report the findings...
Article
Full-text available
Kinship terminologies are the semantic systems of language that express kinship relations between individuals: in English, 'aunt' denotes a parent's sister. Theoretical models of kinship terminology diversity reduce over 10 billion possible organisations to six key types, each of which are hypothesised to be aligned with particular cultural norms o...
Article
Full-text available
Prestige is a key concept across the social and behavioral sciences and has been implicated as an important driver in the processes governing human learning and behavior and the evolution of culture. However, existing scales of prestige fail to account for the full breadth of its potential determinants or focus only on collective social institution...
Article
Full-text available
Kinship is a fundamental and universal aspect of the structure of human society. The kinship category of 'grandparents' is socially salient, owing to grandparents' investment in the care of the grandchildren as well as to older generations' control of wealth and cultural knowledge, but the evolutionary dynamics of grandparent terms has yet to be st...
Article
Full-text available
Language is one of the most complex of human traits. There are many hypotheses about how it originated, what factors shaped its diversity, and what ongoing processes drive how it changes. We present the Causal Hypotheses in Evolutionary Linguistics Database (CHIELD, https://chield.excd.org/), a tool for expressing, exploring, and evaluating hypothe...
Article
This topic addresses a question of key interest to cognitive science, namely which factors may have triggered, constrained, or shaped the course of cognitive evolution. It highlights the relevance of culture as a driving force in this process, with a special focus on social learning and language, conceptual tools, and material culture. In so doing,...
Preprint
Sociolinguistic studies have established that people make judgements about speakers based on accent. Standard and non-standard accents have differing levels of prestige and demonstrate variation across other attitudinal terms. Because prestige can increase the likelihood of information transmission, we explore variation in accent prestige to determ...
Article
Full-text available
Languages do not replace their vocabularies at an even rate: words endure longer if they are used more frequently. This effect, which has parallels in evolutionary biology, has been demonstrated for the core vocabulary, a set of common, unrelated meanings. The extent to which it replicates in closed lexical classes remains to be seen, and may indic...
Preprint
Full-text available
Social inequality is now pervasive in human societies, despite the fact that humans lived in relatively egalitarian, small-scale societies across most of our history. Prior literature highlights the importance of environmental conditions, economic defensibility, and wealth transmission for shaping early Holocene origins of social inequality. Howeve...
Preprint
Prestige is a key concept across the social and behavioral sciences and has been implicated as an important driver in the processes governing human learning and behavior and the evolution of culture. However, existing scales of prestige fail to account for the full breadth of its potential determinants or focus only on collective social institution...
Article
Full-text available
Human populations display remarkable diversity in language and culture, but the variation is not without limit. At the population level, variation between societies may be structured by a range of macro‐evolutionary factors, including ecological and environmental resources, shared ancestry, spatial proximity, and covarying social practices. Kinship...
Article
Full-text available
Resumo Este estudo explora o sistema de terminologia de parentesco da língua Proto-Tupí-Guaraní (PTG) a partir de uma perspectiva interdisciplinar, que soma contribuições da Etnologia, da Linguística Histórica e dos trabalhos etnográficos realizados com povos Tupí-Guaraní. Fazem-se inferências sobre pré-história cultural utilizando métodos filogené...
Article
Human life depends on plant biodiversity and the ways in which plants are used are culturally determined. Whilst anthropologists have used phylogenetic comparative methods (PCMs) to gain an increasingly sophisticated understanding of the evolution of political, religious, social and material culture, plant use has been almost entirely neglected. Me...
Article
Full-text available
In their recent paper on “Challenges in mathematical cognition”, Alcock and colleagues (Alcock et al. [2016]. Challenges in mathematical cognition: A collaboratively derived research agenda. Journal of Numerical Cognition, 2, 20–41) defined a research agenda through 26 specific research questions. An important dimension of mathematical cognition al...
Article
Full-text available
How humans obtain food has dramatically reshaped ecosystems and altered both the trajectory of human history and the characteristics of human societies. Our species' subsistence varies widely, from predominantly foraging strategies, to plant-based agriculture and animal husbandry. The extent to which environmental, social and historical factors hav...
Article
Full-text available
Beller, S., Bender, A., Chrisomalis, S., Jordan, F. M., Overmann, K. A., Saxe, G. B., & Schlimm, D. (2018). The cultural challenge in mathematical cognition. Journal of Numerical Cognition. In their recent paper on “Challenges in mathematical cognition”, Alcock and colleagues (Alcock et al. [2016]. Challenges in mathematical cognition: A collaborat...
Article
Full-text available
Where a newly-married couple lives, termed post-marital residence, varies cross-culturally and changes over time. While many factors have been proposed as drivers of this change, among them general features of human societies like warfare, migration and gendered division of subsistence labour, little is known about whether changes in residence patt...
Article
Full-text available
The Dravidian language family consists of about 80 varieties (Hammarström H. 2016 Glottolog 2.7) spoken by 220 million people across southern and central India and surrounding countries (Steever SB. 1998 In The Dravidian languages (ed. SB Steever), pp. 1textendash39: 1). Neither the geographical origin of the Dravidian language homeland nor its exa...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
What's archaeology got to do with it? Archaeology contributes to cognitive science in two key areas. First, in understanding human cognitive evolution, archaeology furnishes critical data on the timing and context of developments (Wynn, 2002). This approach assumes minds make tools: increasing complexity in material forms is an effect of, and thus...
Article
Full-text available
From the foods we eat and the houses we construct, to our religious practices and political organization, to who we can marry and the types of games we teach our children, the diversity of cultural practices in the world is astounding. Yet, our ability to visualize and understand this diversity is limited by the ways it has been documented and shar...
Data
D-PLACE societies per language family. Currently, D-PLACE contains cultural data for over 1400 societies, drawn from two major cross-cultural datasets (the Ethnographic Atlas and Binford Hunter-Gatherer datasets). The societies are associated with 1202 unique languages and approximately 1315 dialects. Linguistic information for each society is avai...
Article
In each semantic domain studied to date, there is considerable variation in how meanings are expressed across languages. But are some semantic domains more likely to show variation than others? Is the domain of space more or less variable in its expression than other semantic domains, such as containers, body parts, or colours? According to many li...
Article
In this paper, we report an experiment on the naming of household containers in Dutch and Icelandic carried out as part of the Evolution of Semantic Systems project (EoSS; Majid et al., 2011). This naming experiment allows us to support and elaborate on a hypothesis by Malt et al. (2003) that productive morphology in the naming domain can have an i...
Article
Land tenure norms are fundamental to our understanding of the evolution of human cooperation and the emergence of inequality in large-scale societies. A prime example of niche construction, their emergence transformed the selective pressures facing early cultivators. We use phylogenetic methods to reconstruct the evolutionary trajectories of land t...
Chapter
Full-text available
Small-scale human societies are a leap in size and complexity from those of our primate ancestors. We propose that the behavioral predispositions which allowed the evolution of small-scale societies were also those that allowed the cultural evolution of large-scale sociality, in the form of multiple transitions to large-scale societies. Although su...
Article
Full-text available
This special issue "Evolutionary Approaches to Cross-Cultural Anthropology" brings together scholars from the fields of behavioral ecology, evolutionary psychology, and cultural evolution whose cross-cultural work draws on evolutionary theory and methods. The papers here are a subset of those presented at a symposium we organized for the 2011 meeti...
Chapter
This chapter explains how the careful selection of animal models provides exciting, novel perspectives on the development and evolution of human cognitive structure. This chapter also reviews evidence from spatial, temporal and numerical cognition, all three of which are foundational cognitive domains ensuring basic vertebrate experience. Competing...
Article
Full-text available
Archaeologists and anthropologists have long recognized that different cultural complexes may have distinct descent histories, but they have lacked analytical techniques capable of easily identifying such incongruence. Here, we show how bayesian phylogenetic analysis can be used to identify incongruent cultural histories. We employ the approach to...
Article
Social structure in human societies is underpinned by the variable expression of ideas about relatedness between different types of kin. We express these ideas through language in our kin terminology: to delineate who is kin and who is not, and to attach meanings to the types of kin labels associated with different individuals. Cross-culturally, th...
Article
Full-text available
A growing body of theoretical and empirical research has examined cultural transmission and adaptive cultural behaviour at the individual, within-group level. However, relatively few studies have tried to examine proximate transmission or test ultimate adaptive hypotheses about behavioural or cultural diversity at a between-societies macro-level. I...
Article
Full-text available
Accurate reconstruction of prehistoric social organization is important if we are to put together satisfactory multidisciplinary scenarios about, for example, the dispersal of human groups. Such considerations apply in the case of Indo-European and Austronesian, two large-scale language families that are thought to represent Neolithic expansions. A...
Article
Very little research has attempted to describe normal human variation in female genitalia, and no studies have compared the visual images that women might use in constructing their ideas of average and acceptable genital morphology to see if there are any systematic differences. The objective of the present work was to determine if visual depiction...
Article
Full-text available
Explanations in the domain of kinship can be sought on several different levels: Jones addresses online processing, as well as issues of origins and innateness. We argue that his framework can more usefully be applied at the levels of developmental and historical change, the latter especially. A phylogenetic approach to the diversity of kinship ter...
Article
Contemporary comparative cognition has a large repertoire of animal models and methods, with concurrent theoretical advances that are providing initial answers to crucial questions about human cognition. What cognitive traits are uniquely human? What are the species-typical inherited predispositions of the human mind? What is the human mind capable...
Article
Full-text available
The nature of social life in human prehistory is elusive, yet knowing how kinship systems evolve is critical for understanding population history and cultural diversity. Post-marital residence rules specify sex-specific dispersal and kin association, influencing the pattern of genetic markers across populations. Cultural phylogenetics allows us to...
Article
Full-text available
Kanazawa (2007) proposes the ‘evolutionary psychological imagination’ (p.7) as an authoritative framework for understanding complex social and public issues. As a case study of this approach, Kanazawa addresses acts of international terrorism, specifically suicide bombings committed by Muslim men. It is proposed that a comprehensive explanation of...
Article
Physiological data from a range of human populations living in different environments can provide valuable information for testing evolutionary hypotheses about human adaptation. By taking into account the effects of population history, phylogenetic comparative methods can help us determine whether variation results from selection due to particular...
Article
Descent systems express how a society organises kinship relationships. Inheritance of resources as well as rights and obligations can be traced patrilineally, matrilineally, a combination of both, or in a cognatic/bilateral fashion. Post-marital residence rules describing the kin group with whom a couple lives after marriage are often, but not alwa...

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